Ludwig van Beethoven

About Ludwig van Beethoven

Considered one of the greatest, and perhaps the greatest, composer of all time, Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827) wrote nine symphonies, five piano concertos, thirty-two piano sonatas, sixteen string quartets, seven piano trios, ten violin sonatas, a violin concerto, the Missa Solemnis, the opera Fidelio, ballet and incidental music, overtures, and other works for orchestra, voice, chamber ensemble, and solo piano. The German pianist, conductor, and composer was a crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western music and influenced nearly every composer who followed him.

“Name Day” Overture

By |2020-12-26T12:20:05-06:00December 26th, 2020|Categories: Audio/Video, Beethoven 250, Ludwig van Beethoven, Music|

Zur Namensfeier (English: Feastday or Name day), Op. 115, is a symphonic overture in C major by Ludwig van Beethoven completed in 1815, and first performed on Christmas Day 1815. It is dedicated to Polish prince Antoni Radziwiłł, who is remembered for his patronage of the arts. The piece was never one of Beethoven's more [...]

Piano Concerto No. 5, “Emperor”

By |2020-12-10T15:02:30-06:00November 27th, 2020|Categories: Audio/Video, Beethoven 250, Ludwig van Beethoven, Music|

Beethoven's final and most popular piano concerto, the "Emperor's" heroic style and grandeur well earn the nickname given it by its English publisher. "Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 5," James Keays opines, "could be considered either the last great concerto in the classical style or, because of its immensely powerful gestures, the first of the great [...]


By |2020-11-27T13:43:37-06:00November 20th, 2020|Categories: Beethoven 250, Ludwig van Beethoven, Music|

Fidelio, originally titled Leonore, oder Der Triumph der ehelichen Liebe (Leonore, or The Triumph of Marital Love), Op. 72, is Ludwig van Beethoven's only opera. The German libretto was originally prepared by Joseph Sonnleithner from the French of Jean-Nicolas Bouilly, with the work premiering at Vienna's Theater an der Wien on 20 November 1805. The [...]

“King Stephen”

By |2020-08-20T16:42:44-05:00August 19th, 2020|Categories: Audio/Video, Beethoven 250, Ludwig van Beethoven, Music|

In July 1811, Ludwig van Beethoven accepted a commission to provide incidental music to two plays that were to be performed at the opening of the new Hungarian Theatre in Pest. Authored by August von Kotzebue, King Stephen: or Hungary’s First Benefactor and The Ruins of Athens were nationalistic dramas in the German singspiel format (combining [...]

“The Glorious Moment”

By |2020-08-20T16:35:50-05:00June 9th, 2020|Categories: Audio/Video, Beethoven 250, Ludwig van Beethoven, Music|

Beethoven’s unusual cantata Der glorreiche Augenblick (The Glorious Moment), Op. 136, was commissioned by the Vienna City Administration. The work has an undistinguished text suited to the occasion of its first performance, a tribute to the kings and princes of Europe after the defeat of Napoleon, words that are at least better than those that Beethoven had [...]

“Holy Song of Thanksgiving”

By |2020-11-27T19:23:15-06:00March 26th, 2017|Categories: Audio/Video, Ludwig van Beethoven, Music|

Some two years before he died, having just recovered from a serious intestinal illness, Ludwig van Beethoven composed a long movement for string quartet, which he called “Holy Song of Thanksgiving of a Convalescent to the Deity, in the Lydian Mode” (“Heiliger Dankgesang eines Genesenen an die Gottheit, in der lydischen Tonart”). He used the piece as [...]

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